Preparing for the Flood Before it Hits

Recent flood events worldwide, fueled by global warming, have led a U.N. panel to call for better preparations worldwide. With water being so prevalent on the planet, it only makes sense to develop ways to combat flooding, especially in undeveloped countries. Hurricane Sandy took 110 lives when it hit the U.S. last year. Compare that to the nearly 2,000 people killed by a much weaker Tropical Storm Bopha when it struck the Philippines, and the disparity becomes obvious.

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon stated that “risk reduction must go hand in hand with efforts to fight global warming,” according to a report by www.preventionweb.net.

While working to reduce the damage caused by floods, or even prevent it altogether, nations must deal with the cause behind the rising ferocity of flooding, climate change. Ki-moon’s hope is to get the nations of the world, and their leaders, to sign off onto a legally binding climate change agreement by 2015. This keeps in line with promises world leaders made at previous meetings of the world’s leading nations.

Some of the first steps to fight damage related to climate change include raising awareness about the issues, sharing what works for individual nations, and beginning the process of identifying the issues that affect the international community. The hope lies in nations working together to lessen the impact of flooding associated with the changing weather and melting ice caps.

Not only was flooding addressed, but drought as well. While it seems unlikely that droughts arise out of a global warming scenario, that could not be further from the truth. Rising temperatures, brought about by global warming, damage crops, thus reducing yields, or destroying crops outright. If the current trend continues, worldwide hunger could become another side effect of the global warming scenario.

Earthquakes, and their resultant tsunamis, bring an entirely other side to the global risk from flooding. Earthquakes in and of themselves can lead to catastrophic damage on a regional scale. This damage only increases in coastal areas when tsunami waters rush in soon after an earthquake has struck, often with disastrous results. Worse yet, the earthquake does not even have to hit in the country suffering from the earthquake.

As shown, flooding, whether caused by storms fueled by global warming or even a natural disaster such as an earthquake, has become a worldwide problem. Nations around the world need to work together to fight this increasing threat. One way of doing this is by adopting legally binding agreements to fight this growing problem.


For more information about how global warming is affecting flooding, visit: http://www.preventionweb.net/english/professional/news/v.php?id=31759